The center also provides some victims with transitional shelter in apartments scattered across the Imperial Valley.
"Transitional shelters are designed for people who want to make the break from their batterer because a lot of people go back to them," said center Executive Director Barbara Shaver.
Individuals and their children can live in the transitional residences as long as two years on the condition that they have a plan to change their lives. Those plans include enrollment in a work-training program or school such as Imperial Valley College. The goal, Shaver says, is to make former victims self-supportive.
One problem is many domestic violence victims don't even know what services are out there or how to get them, said Judith Klein-Pritchard, the center's assistant director for legal services.
The center provides legal and advocacy services in which client advocates collaborate with other county agencies to get victims whatever services they need.
The center provides several educational classes to further assist former victims in becoming self-sufficient.
Parenting, computer, English as a second language, driver education and basic life skills classes are just some of the educational offerings the center provides free of charge. There are even activities and mentoring programs for children to help these young victims cope with what they've experienced.
All of these services would be needless if violence never happened in the first place. With this in mind, the center offers a variety of violence prevention and anger management programs as well.
A violence prevention program in local schools teaches young people how to communicate "so they can know how to approach their problems and discuss them without getting angry," Shaver said.
"Being mad is fine. It's what you do with it" that can be dangerous, Klein-Pritchard said.
"It's a re-education," she added.
These are just a few of the services the Center for Family Solutions offers the community. For more information about these or other services, call the center at 353-6922.
Staff Writer Kelly Grant can be reached at 337-3441.